Boys at Owatonna learn to waterski, swim, and throw a Frisbee. They sail, summit mountains, and play street hockey. In the evenings they play capture the flag, toast s’mores around a campfire, and have super fun cabin nights. These activities teach practical skills and make the campers confident in a whole range of sports, games, and social situations. While these are certainly an important part of learning at Owatonna, what is most important is not the skills learned but the moral and spiritual growth that happens weekly, daily, even minute-by-minute all summer long.
Counselors are excellent role models with strong character to demonstrate how to win and lose with humility; how to face new challenges with poise; and how to overcome seeming limitations and fears with confidence. Campers are embraced for who they are, not who others think they should be. With no cell phones, social media, or video games, the boys build deep friendships where everybody feels safe, accepted, and loved. Every day ends with giving gratitude and sharing the opportunities they had to do good for others, and there is never a shortage of things to share. A summer on the shores of Long Lake is one filled with fun, friendship, and a lifelong brotherhood built on shared lessons of compassion, kindness, and confidence.